WCW: Thunder (09.03.98)

WCW: Thunder
September 3, 1998
Peoria, IL
Peoria Civic Center

The current WCW champs are as follows:
WCW World Champion: Bill Goldberg (7/6/1998)
WCW U.S. Champion: Bret Hart (8/13/1998)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Giant & Scott Hall (7/20/1998)
WCW World Television Champion: Chris Jericho (8/10/1998)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Juventud Guerrera (8/8/1998)

Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan, and Lee Marshall. If you can believe it, Lee Marshall brings up an interesting point about “Team WCW” going into Wargames. Roddy Piper, the Warrior, and Diamond Dallas Page are three guys Hollywood Hogan has never pinned.

  • Marty Jannetty vs. Rick Fuller

Oh, I lied. This is the last Marty Jannetty appearance in WCW. Apparently, he suffered a shoulder injury in his snoozefest with Konnan on Monday night. Fuller does a decent job being the big man, but something is off with Jannetty. He’s not even the worker he was in 1996 WWF. Fuller throws him around and he sells those moves pretty well, but his offense is weak and outdated. The ROCKER DROPPER gets the win in 3:08.

We get EXCITING still shots of what went down in the main event on the previous episode of Nitro.

After the break, they take us back to Nitro where Saturn told Mike Tenay that he has “pride and honor” and won’t let Raven and Lodi break his ethical code. Saturn wouldn’t even punch Kanyon either. They take us through the tag match with High Voltage. Saturn does all the work and Lodi gets the pinfall.

  • Kaz Hayashi vs. Lenny Lane

Clearly they want Lenny Lane to be the next Chris Jericho of the cruiserweight division. The crowd hates on Lenny and pops when Hayashi levels him with a spinning heel kick. Lane thumbs him in the eye and starts running him from corner to corner with turnbuckle smashes. Hayashi flips out of a release German suplex and delivers a headscissors, but then Lane blocks another one with a hotshot. Lane is basking in the glory of the hate from the fans. Lane wins a chopfest and tries a bulldog out of the corner, but Hayashi shoves him off into the corner. Hayashi comes off the top with a flying bodypress, but Lane rolls through for two. Lane sets Hayashi up on the top buckle, but Hayashi headscissors him to the floor (yes!) and delivers a twisting plancha to Lane. Back in, Lane catches Hayashi coming off the top with a powerslam for 1-2-NO! Lane starts to get frustrated, but maintains control. There’s a series of nearfalls that go back and forward. Over to the corner again, Hayashi gives Lane a headscissors off the top and then hits the FLYING SENTON SPLASH for the win. (5:58) Well, that was a fun match. While 1999 isn’t super memorable for Kaz Hayashi in WCW, he does wrestle Lenny Lane for the Cruiserweight title at Fall Brawl which is twelve months away. **¼

Back to Thunder on 8/26/98, we see nWo Wolfpac member Konnan saving Team WCW member DDP from getting clobbered by the Giant, Stevie Ray, and Vincent from the nWo B&W.

  • High Voltage vs. Disorderly Conduct

Disorderly Conduct is now PRIMETIME, baby. Can you believe it? They are “Mean Mike” and “Tough Tom”. Alliteration has always been big in WCW. Our commentators talk about everything but this match. Lots of power moves from High Voltage to get them over. When Heenan compares High Voltage to the Steiner brothers, they just talk about the Steiner brothers. Heel miscommunication ensues. High Voltage hits the CIRCUIT BREAKER (springboard doomsday device) on Tough Tom for the win. (5:00) This is the last match for High Voltage as a tag team as they try to see where things go as singles wrestlers. Kaos made the better go at it, but ultimately ended up retiring at the end of 1999. Rage would work New Japan in the early 2000s, but would retire in 2007. *

  • Wrath vs. Barry Horowitz

We haven’t seen Horowitz on Thunder since he was flattened by Goldberg back in May. Here he is again being flattened by the next big thing in Wrath. The MELTDOWN ends Horowitz in 2:28.

Special Interview with Saturn: He’s going into his match at Fall Brawl against Raven because he’s tired of people like Raven bullying people. Saturn puts himself over as a man of integrity because he was an Army ranger. He will continue to be Lodi’s slave (does Lodi know about this interview?) and keep his word no matter what it takes.

  • Meng vs. Raven (w/the Flock)

There’s no way this is happening. Why would it be happening? Raven and Kanyon agree to let Riggs and Sick Boy fight this match.

  • Meng vs. Sick Boy, Horace & Riggs (w/Raven, Kanyon, Lodi, and Saturn)

This is just Meng putting TONGAN DEATH GRIPS on everybody. Meng pins Sick Boy in 1:12. Afterwards, Raven orders Lodi to order Saturn to fight Meng. Saturn does okay until Kanyon kicks him in the head into the TONGAN DEATH GRIP. Oh boy. They have done all this to put Meng over as an uncontrollable monster and they are going to mess it up.

WCW Saturday Night! Watch it – IF YOU WILL! 6:05PM eastern time on TBS! Curt Hennig, Diamond Dallas Page, and many other top stars from not only WCW but also the nWo! It’s the MUTHASHIP! Take it to the PAY WINDAH, baby!

  • Saturn vs. Kanyon (w/Raven & Lodi)

Mike Tenay replaces Lee Marshall for the rest of the show. Kanyon comes back out with Raven and Lodi despite Saturn still down in the ring. Weird. With Saturn staggered, Kanyon comes up behind him for the electric chair facebuster. WHO’S BETTA THAN KANYON? He continues to hit Saturn with everything – working on the back and doing his innovative offensive moves. Kanyon throws Saturn out to Raven. Back in, Kanyon gets two. He sets Saturn up in the corner and drops him backwards with a reverse neckbreaker. Cover, 1-2-NO! SATURN WILL NOT DIE! A swinging cradle suplex gets two as well. A spinebuster gets the same result. Saturn comes out of nowhere with a release belly to belly suplex. There’s a T-bone suplex. HERE COMES SATURN! Lodi grows tired of Saturn’s comeback and orders Saturn to take the Flatliner. Since he’s a “man of his word”, he willingly takes the FLATLINER and Kanyon gets the three-count. (9:05) Not a bad comeback match for Saturn. He’s actually quite fun to watch with Kanyon pulling out every move he can do, but Saturn’s character doesn’t really hold up well in 2021. *½

  • Dean Malenko vs. Brian Adams

No match. During Malenko’s entrance, CURT HENNIG nails him from behind. He and Adams do a number on Malenko. Ref Billy Silverman gets decked. Rick Rude joins in on the fun. At one point during the attack, Rude gives Malenko the RUDE AWAKENING and even does the hip swivel. AWESOME. Hennig will stop at nothing to keep the Four Horsemen from reforming. A trainer runs out and checks on Malenko while Hennig cuts a promo on Malenko. Looks like there might be a cage match planned for Hennig and Malenko coming up on Nitro. Some cyclone fencing appears out of nowhere and they drape it over Malenko while he’s down. BRUTAL. I like it.

  • Norman Smiley vs. Riggs

Riggs is still selling the Tongan Death Grip from half an hour ago. Smiley gets suckered into the deception and attacked. Smiley comes back a jawbreaker and headbutts Riggs in the corner. Schiavone confirms that Dean Malenko will get a cage match with Curt Hennig on Monday Nitro. Tenay finds Hennig in a cage match with one of the Four Horsemen’s biggest proponents for reformation pretty ironic since Hennig is the one who slammed the cage door on Ric Flair last year at Wargames. Riggs fights out of a chinlock and forces Smiley to the corner. He then throws Smiley to the floor and gives him a double sledge from the apron. Back inside, Riggs pulls back on the arms and tries a rollup for two. Smiley avoids a flying knee drop. Taking advantage of the injured knee, Smiley takes him down with a rolling kneebar for the tapout. (6:38) This wasn’t all that bad, but who really cares? ¾*

MFGWLM HYPE: “Big Trouble in Little China” (1986) starring Kurt Russell (!!). ONE OF MY FAVES.

  • Disco Inferno & Alex Wright vs. Scott & Steve Armstrong

Yawn. Call me when Brad Armstrong is here. Alex Wright does some prelim stuff with Steve to start in between his dancing. Our esteemed commentators discuss the “Armstrong Curse”. Wright dropkicks Steve and tags out to Disco. Umm, somebody missed their cue or something. Anyways, Disco and Scott Armstrong square off. Scott runs down Disco with a shoulderblock, but Disco comes right back with a hiptoss and an armdrag into an armbar. The Honky Tonk Man fist drop connects. Steve gets lured in so Disco and Alex can double-team. The Armstrongs get a second wind as Steve slams Scott onto Disco. Now Wright is being lured in and Disco is getting double-teamed. Disco gets the desperate pin on Steve, but Scott distracts the ref. Disco comes back with an inverted atomic drop. Scott nails Disco from behind as he comes off the ropes, but then Wright comes in and knocks Steve into Disco. Whoops. Tag to Scott, Disco sidesteps a missile dropkick from Scott to wipe out Steve. Now Scott is all alone. Disco gives him a facebuster and Wright drops him with a REVERSE NECKBREAKER for the win. (5:31) It had its moments. *

  • Diamond Dallas Page & Konnan vs. The Giant & Stevie Ray

Weird seeing DDP and Konnan being cozy with each other. Tony tries to explain why these two would be buddies by saying the nWo Wolfpac doesn’t care about the tradition of WCW, but does respect some of their wrestlers. Konnan and Stevie Ray start us off. Stevie Ray puts him down quick and runs him into the corner. Konnan comes right back with the Rolling Clothesline. Next, we get DDP and the Giant. DDP slugs on the Giant, but Giant pulls him into a clothesline. He steps on DDP and whips him into the ropes, but DDP does a floatover and tries a sunset flip. Giant won’t go down and pulls DDP up by his throat into a backbreaker. Almost a CHOKEBREAKER. DDP comes back with a floatover DDT. He covers Giant, but Giant throws him away. Konnan gets a tag, but Giant yanks him into a shot from Stevie Ray. Now Stevie Ray rules the ring while Konnan plays face in peril. Konnan comes back with the K-Factor and makes the tag to DDP. He runs wild and nails Stevie Ray with the DIAMOND CUTTER. Giant stops the pinfall as Brian Adams and Vincent run out to jump both DDP and Konnan for the usual DQ. (6:07) Goldberg clears the ring of everybody but the Giant. They go nose-to-nose yelling at each other as we close the show – because WE’RE OUTTA TIME! ¾*

This show would be so much better if it were just an hour.

Until next time, so long for now.

Posted on April 15, 2021, in WCW and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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